This is the NUMBER ONE QUESTION people are asking, right after HOW ARE YOU?
We are fine. The buildings are 90% fine. Little things need repaired. We will get to those in 2018 when we have electricity and when the hardware stores have had time to restock lumber and whatever else we may need. Insurance will cover much of the costs and we trust God to cover the rest.
We had a 1 year old generator that took us through Hurricane Irma and into Hurricane Maria but running it 15 hours per day for a month finally made that generator less generous. Nor could the females on staff generate enough pull to make Black Max run.
GOD KNEW. That same week that Black Max the generator decided to not run no matter how much we pulled, the Second Union Church of Guaynabo PR came and delivered a gift and cash and a new yellow generator which ran delightfully! New Yellow Generator runs the classroom though sometimes, the teacher opts for heat and quiet rather than lights, fans and generator hum.
(Valie, our local maintenance volunteer, has adopted Black Max for his home since we’ve been given a larger generator by FEMA.) My God SUPPLIES! (Phil 4:19)
NEED #1 was checked off the list when FEMA came and established a communication Hotspot for Deaf in the area. They installed a (relatively) quiet diesel generator and they provide gas and maintenance for that. No more pulling. No more spilling gasoline. No more using a flashlight in the dark to see if the tank is full enough! And a satellite dish rigged up to provide Internet signal for videophone and video messaging (and of course we use it for the classroom and after work hours and weekends for our e-mail and blogging and entertainment purposes). One student’s mother is taking online classes – she is delighted to sit in the office with a fan and Internet as she does her homework.
NEED #2 required dollars and sense – We have a generator for the classroom and need to buy gas and oil and take care of that. Pray for both of those. Especially SENSE, since none of us are generator mechanics and it seems from previous experience that generators can be finicky about their oil.
NEED #3 – We have people sending parcels which arrive randomly but consistently. Most parcels are filled with GREAT STUFF and we are so excited to open them – CANDLES! batteries D, AA, AAA; solar light products; canned foods (SPAM, ham, tuna, chicken); tortillas, crackers, rice cakes, jam, peanut butter, trail mix, granola bars (ok I said HEALTHY SNACKS… but please send one chocolate or sugar snack per box??), powdered milk. THESE THINGS ARE STILL NEEDED.
Some people actually stop by and drop off boxes – today a couple brought bandaids, peanutbutter crackers, etc etc etc. WOW Huge blessing to meet the givers!
One parcel packer sent school lunches – tacos in a box with black beans, cheese spread, tortillas, canned chicken 🙂 another sent a recipe and the things to make raisin bran muffins; another sent a birthday party in a box! how creative!
As special events, like a birthday, the parcel opener has been squirreling away things that can be wrapped and given as gifts. With Christmas coming and the stores and mail and banks being slow to deliver, I think we will be squirreling more things and opening our own “FREE” STORE for the families, students, etc to have selections from. YOUR THOUGHTFUL PARCEL COULD HELP A CHILD ENJOY CHRISTMAS or KINGS’ DAY.
NEED #4 Some have sent games and puzzles, coloring books, word search games, and others are already packing craft things that we can make for Christmas gifts.
NEED #5 We still use lots of candles around the school in the evenings. We have been instructed to CONSERVE and so we do. Only the school fridges and freezer are running on the generated power. We use apartment lights sparingly and fans turn off as we leave rooms.
NEED #6 Candles are lovely but little Deaf boys like matches too much to allow candles to be safe. We made sure that solar lights donated by crisis relief teams made it to the homes of our little Deaf boys. ALSO It’s hard to imagine Christmas without the pretty lights… so if any of you are into solar lighting, maybe you would locate and send some strings of lights that each of the students and staff could take home to decorate an outdoor tree or plant as part of their Christmas celebration.
If you have a question or thought on this, shoot an email to the school director at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you want to make a donation
- generator for the classroom fund
- Solar Panels for the classroom building fund
- General Needs fund
- School lunches fund
- Student tuition fund
We have some work teams in the plans for the coming year – if you are interested and know WELDING, CARPENTRY, TREE STUMP REMOVAL, ELECTRICAL REPAIR, GROUNDS MAINTENANCE, PAINTING, please contact Betsy at email@example.com
Thanks for your generosity in sending parcels. Thanks for the prayers and love that accompanies them. Thanks for your prayers and cards and letters and cash included to see us through this period of bank closure. My God SUPPLIES! above all I ever asked or thought!
Praise GOD from Whom ALL blessings FLOW!